Treasure Planet loses a treasure

Recently, the LA times had the report that the movie, in the first 5 days in the theaters, won a mere 16.6 million dollars.
The early financial results were so bad that Disney took the extraordinary step of lowering its annual earnings by tens of millions of dollars. Treasure Planet did cost an estimated $180 million to make and market; it is expected to be the biggest money loser in the history of Disney animation.

Egad! How bad is this? Wasn’t The Black cauldron worse? Based on inflation? Are there any other Disney movies that have lost money?

Quite a few of their earlier movies lost money upon initial release. They’ve since made it up, though, in releases and video.

In the modern era, they’ve had a few that have at best broken even but probably lost money as well.

I have a really hard time understanding how they could spend so much money on such a film. I mean Lilo & Stitch’s domestic is about equal to Treasure Planet’s budget. Lilo is probably the studio’s best reviewed movie in a decade. I’m also confused as to what was so expensive about it. Lilo cost $80m to make. Dinosaur cost $127m.

I do think they’re marketing to a younger audience then the movie itself is made for. I would think their best audience to market to would be 10-29 year old males. I also think it suffers from the same thing the Powerpuff Girls movie did, bad timing.

180 million? My god are they including the cost of every PC the company owns in the cost of the film?

The Black Cauldron was a cinematic masterpiece compared to Treasure Planet.

Both of my kids, who love animated movies, were with me when we saw the trailer for it months ago (during Ice Age, I think).

“That looks stupid,” said Jr. Ranger I, age 8 at the time.

15 year old Jr. Ranger II looked at me and said, “That’s gonna blow chunks.”

Not a single kid in the theater around us said one, “Hey, cool!” or “Mommy, I wanna see that.”

That’s always a bad sign.

I ended up being talked into going by an adult friend who had high hopes for it because he loved Treasure Island. I thought he was going to cry.

Black Cauldron is not even close to what this disaster is projecting to. BC grossed $21M on a $25M budget in 1985. So it grossed 84% of its budget on its initial run. TP is projecting around $40M on a $140M Budget (note - the $180M figure qouted included a marketing budget of $40M), which yields a 28.6% ratio.

Most studios hope to make budget on initial run domestic gross, turning their profit on Worldwide & Video. That’s been the usual pattern for most Disney animated films, in fact in the post Mermaid era I would say most have exceeded it, and in some cases greatly exceeding it - Lion King for example grossed $312M on an $80M budget in '94. High domestic ratios are one reason for their success as a company. The increase in budget costs has definately caused a slide for the last few releases but they were at least making their budget. Disney will be lucky if this thing breaks even when everything is said & done - which is definately saying something.

Fine. Since I don’t give a load what people say, especially you Arden, I liked Treasure Planet, and Black Couldron is one of the worst pieces of cinematic trash my wife ever made me sit through.

So there.

Thus speaketh the Heap.

Really? You liked it?

I thought about going, the concept of doing Treasure Island in space isn’t all that repugnant to me, but after I heard that the hero had a record-breaking THREE nattering, annoying, “humorous” side-kicks, I chose to give it a miss and just read the damn book to my kid.

Uke, I overlooked the sidekicks, made somewhat easier since the stupid robot didn’t show up until near the end. What really got me to go to this film was my geekiness. I saw the commercials and one word popped into my head: Spelljammer.

That and the characters from a great and familiar story … yeah. It was good. And the imagery was breathtaking.

I love you anyway, Gorgon Heap. So, nayh. :stuck_out_tongue:

Since when is three annoying sidekicks in a Disney movie record-breaking? “Quasi” (ugh) had the three gargoyles in Hunchback, Poca-Barbie had her three nature friends in Pocahontas, and Ariel had her three seafaring (well, two and a bird) foils as well. It seems to me that the three-sidekick rule has been in place for some time!

That said, I may or may not see this while its in the theatre. We’ve got better movies to see before it, though, such as Star Trek: Nemesis and (drool, drool), Two Towers, the latter of which my kids are looking forward to anxiously. Treasure Planet, which they’ve expressed almost no interest in, will be the “if we get to it” movie, I think.

A good friend of mine spent the last five years of her life working on this film. Needless to say, she’s been pretty depressed this past week with the reception.

I gotta agree with Gorgon Heap; I thought Treasure Planet was fairly good, certainly not deserving of the massive failure it’s turning out to be. The ‘three sidekicks’ things really isn’t as bad as some of the critics are saying; none of the three are really with him the whole time. The one voiced by David Hyde Pierce, who is with him for quite a bit of screentime, I thought was actually really funny. He even had a couple of laugh-out-loud lines, for me. The little cutsey morphing one was slightly annoying, but not too bad. And as has been pointed out, the robot didn’t show up until quite late in the film, and although I find Martin Short to be occasionally annoying, I thought he did a decent job. A bit too much yelling, but some funny stuff, as well.

All in all, it wasn’t great. But it wasn’t bad, either. Some funny lines. A storyline that held up. A reasonably faithful enough adaptation of the book (although, to be fair, I haven’t read the book since I was about 10, so I might not be remembering it so well), and no singing of schmaltzy songs (always my least favorite part of Disney animation). Give it a chance. And not just so my friend will get hired again! :slight_smile:

In defense of the morphling, how else would you translate “parrot” to a space opera setting?

WTF… 18th century ships that fly in space? Disney must’ve been shooting up bad to come up with that one.

No I’ve played PC games that had the same thing.

There are two reasons why this movie flopped.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

The Santa Clause 2

Both of these films go after the same audience as TP and both out grossed TP. It’s tough enough for two family films to be in the market at the same timie but three is pushing it. So really Disney (well Buena Vista) put the film out on the wrong weekend.

Too Bad So Sad.

Be sure never to watch Starblazers, ok? :wink:

(Warning: small Flash movie on that link.)

That reminded me that Japanese anime has a boatload of serials with space ships looking like sea vessels.

Anime? what is Anime?

And thanks to deathawk.


You are aware that Disney is distributing Miyazaki, yes? At least the DVD’s are sub-titled. Might actually get a decent release of Nausicaa if we are lucky.

…our Starblazers…

I agreed with the Jr. Rangers… the trailer looked awful.

I remember the trailer to The Lion King (actually, it was just the opening song animation followed by The Lion King logo.) didn’t have a clue what it was about, or why I should care, but that opening was so magnificent, I wanted to see that film right then. And I was well over the Disney target age.

What happened to those days?

Yes I was aware, but I forgot to mention the rest; must be the medication… . What I was trying to say early, was an attempt to notice how Disney takes ideas from anime and does not even give a mention to Japanese creators for their ideas.

Happy thought now: This failure could prompt Disney to release the Miyazaki movies soon, just to make ends meet for the corporation.

Bad thought now: Or the risky nature of anime features in America will convince Disney not to release them, after the big hit to the bottom line.